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A taste of Brussels
Brussels, Belgium
You can expect just about anything from a city capable of exporting the best chocolate in the world and home to world-famous Brussel sprouts. The Belgian capital is a city of contrasts that will always leave you with a good taste in your mouth
Be a txikitero, my friend
Bilbao, Spain

In Bilbao there are not residents, there are txikiteros. Txikiteros are names given to those who drink txikitos, small glasses of wine served in the bars.

 

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From Madrid to heaven (or so they say)
Madrid, Spain
One of Madrid's most popular sayings is that there's only one hard to visit the latter, let's begin with the former.
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A stroll through Molenbeek, the capital’s most modern neighbourhood
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What NOT to do in Bilbao 2024
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Discover Zorrotzaurre, the Basque Manhattan
15.04.2024

Bilbao exemplifies like few other places in Europe how urban regeneration and evolution should be carried out.

It is an avant-garde city, a cosmopolitan city that combines the roots of one of the richest cultures of the old continent with the modernity of futuristic constructions and a look to the future full of culture.

Being at the forefront of urban regeneration has not made Bilbao stop and rest, far from it. Its latest project could not be more exciting and daring; the island of Zorrotzaurre.

 

The origins of Zorrotzaurre Island: The Deusto Riverside

Before it was an island it was a peninsula, and even before that, the whole area known as the Ribera de Deusto was full of life. We are not talking about a few years ago, we go back to 1729.

With settlements at different points along the banks of the estuary, Bilbao grew and expanded. Those banks linking the Sarriko and Deusto neighbourhoods saw the creation of the docks and the first industries.

With the steady passage of time and the firm intention to continue growing, the area gained land and gradually displaced the water until the mid-19th century, the peak of the shipbuilding industry, with shipyards and anchor factories.  This boom lasted until well into the 20th century.

 

Opening of the Deusto Canal

After years of being approved, work began in 1950 and was inaugurated in 1968, although the works were not finished. The result? The recognisable peninsula that has been part of the idiosyncrasy of Bilbao until very recently.

In 2004 the Zorrotzaurre Plan was presented, designed by the Iranian architect Zaha Hadid, in which the first images of the island, commonly known as the "Bilbao Manhattan", can be seen. It was not until 2018 that the excavations were completed and Bilbao now officially has an island, although it is still connected to Deusto thanks to Frank Gehry's bridge.

 

Present and Future of Zorrotzaurre Island

Bilbao's Manhattan is gradually taking shape. The first buildings and skyscrapers have already appeared in the area, mainly in the north, and the island has become a frenetic coming and going of cranes and workers. The area is more alive than ever and has a fantastic plan for the city.

So far great advances have been made, such as the San Ignacio-Zorrozaurre Bridge, the second bridge in Zorrotzaurre, the first of which was the aforementioned Frank Gehry bridge. This structure connects the island with the San Ignacio neighbourhood.

It is now possible to walk along the great Ría promenade, eleven kilometres long, along El Canal, which has become the longest pedestrian walkway in the whole city of Bilbao.

In addition to all the buildings planned and under construction, the council will create a tramway that will run along the main avenue of the island, with a total length of 2.5 kilometres and five stops along its route.

 

The island is thought of as a place to live, work and enjoy, that is, to be able to lead a full life being connected to the heart of Bilbao, the airport and the future high-speed train station.

Growth is not at odds with environmental awareness, for this reason the island will be highly committed to sustainability and its existence will cause the least possible impact on nature.

Respect for the environment is also a focus of an innovative reality, where we study and work to achieve a balance with the nature that surrounds us and with ourselves, making this place an epicentre of both leisure and healthy work.

 

 

 

 

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